“Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm. For love is strong as death, jealousy is cruel as Sheol. The flashes of it are flashes of fire, a most vehement flame. Many waters cannot quench love, nor can floods drown it. If a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would be utterly scorned.” vs6-7
Love is the most important thing in the world, and it cannot be bought cheaply. It is precious beyond silver and gold, and God gives it to us freely. When we experience and taste God’s love, then we’ll do anything for it, and it cannot be taken away. Our hearts grow cold, but love revived is a most passionate force! It makes you choose love above everything else.
Has the Son of God loved you and given Himself for you? If so, then you love Him back. You know the ecstacy of joy, if you are dwelling in His presence. The love of the world is strong, and only a stronger force can bring us out, which is God’s love in Christ. She says, “Many waters cannot quench love, nor can floods drown it.” Fear will make us come to Him, but fear won’t make us serve in a God pleasing way. Love, however, will make us do every sacrifice because He loved me and gave Himself for me. Paul said, “And I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me (Gal 2:20).” Paul’s whole life, since he heard the gospel, has been devoted to the One who loves him. This is us in Christ: His love is the motivating force to godliness – the fact that He redeemed me from the curse and gave me new life is the reason that I live it.
Do not get put off by the passions of love. Our love is holy in Christ, and we’re right to love the Son. It is the only SAFE LOVE to love Him first, and thereby to be thankful. It is to use this world without abusing it, because our hearts are fixed on God. He says, “If one of the unbelievers invites you over and you want to go, eat everything that is set before you, without raising questions of conscience. But if someone says to you, ‘This is food offered to an idol’, do not eat it, out of consideration for the one who told you, and for conscience sake (1 Cor 10:27-28).” We cannot do good to others and love the world at the same time, so we have to use the world, having our priority with God. When love for the world creeps in, let the love of God push it out – that love that comes to sinners and saves saints freely, that love that reconciled us to Himself and gives us the benefits, the love that cannot change, though we don’t love Him often.
Love is powerful to make you serve, so keep your eye on it. Don’t go in the bondage of the flesh, but excite this love through prayer and confession. Forgiveness is powerful to make you serve, which is love revealed to a people who can appreciate it! Our Lord said, “A creditor had two debtors. One owed 500 denarii, and the other 50. Since they could not pay it back, he graciously forgave them both. So, which of them will love him more?’ Simon answered, ‘I suppose the one he forgave more.’ ‘You have judged correctly’, He told him (Luke 7:41-42).’” Jesus’ love makes us love Him back, swelling up indebtedness in our heart, so that we lay our life down willingly, counting it no great sacrifice or loss. This is God’s grace working the only way that it can, which is renewing the mind by the gospel.
Stay near this love, my brothers, and enjoy the flame that He kindles. Do not count yourself unworthy, but rightfully count it precious!